MIT Proto Ventures program readies new startups for launch

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Powered by the MIT Innovation Initiative (MITii) and launched in October 2019, the MIT Proto Ventures program takes an entirely new approach to venture formation from within MIT. It oversees the accelerated emergence of new ventures along a full life cycle: from discovery of ideas and resources at MIT to exploration of the problem-solution space to a methodical de-risking process to helping build a “proto venture” with internal and external support that demonstrates the viability of the venture.

Under the leadership of MITii Venture Builder Luis Ruben Soenksen PhD ’19, the program announced last week that two new MIT startups will launch as part of Proto Ventures.

“The Proto Ventures program has nurtured everything I know is relevant in order to develop high-impact scientific ventures in today’s world,” says Soenksen. “This time has been an extraordinary complement to my PhD studies and research activities at MIT and is leading me to pursue my passion around artificial intelligence and health care in the form of multiple startups. What more could I’ve hoped for?”

In its first year, the Proto Ventures program has led to hundreds of ecosystem interactions, and a log of 319 screened concepts needed to identify the kind of …

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